Here are three serious poems about three different sad-but-possible scenarios. If you want something lighter, read the short story, under "short story."

In the Field

Haunches sliding up
down, stalking through the stubble,
eyes, ears, nose on scan . . . .

And we are down here twitching,
holding one another
visioning the teeth, claws, pain . . . .

For unknown cause, the terrorizing ceases.
A scuffle of retreat, the silence spreads,
our hearts beat less, our shivers settle . . . .

We sleep below, a crowd of comfort,
softly breathing milky sighs,
never having heard of scythes . . . .




No Hands Clapping

Once in a while,
I take a vacation
from newspapers and TV.
The world rolls away,
Iím alone in my head,
and time skips a step
to adjust to my pace.

Youíve felt it, tooó
the need for
pale colors,
smooth surfaces,
scentless candlelight,
food that slips by the tongue,
and no dogs barking.

Remember those hours of modern September
when only birds were allowed to fly?

As that peace was purchased with disaster,
so all our moments of escape
ride an unstrung raft
above a monstrous tide.




November

She canít recall my name
or my familiar face.
Iím not the father of her boys
who arenít her sons, but
nice young men or
sometimes long lost
brothers she still sees
in uniforms instead of
suits and ties.

Just one of us can call up
days of being there for one
another, lucid, caring, calm.
Just one of us is fearless now
that both of us have passed
the point of no return where
safe, in comfort, unaware, she
burned and crashed.